U.S. House begins debate on $900 billion stimulus bill


(The Center Square) – The U.S. House is debating details of a $900 billion stimulus bill that, if approved, will provide more aid to struggling small businesses and send a second round of direct payments to Americans.

The measure includes $600 in direct payments to adults and children from qualifying households, more than $280 billion in forgivable loans to small businesses through a renewed Paycheck Protection Program, and $300 a week in federal unemployment benefits on top of state benefits.

"I expect we'll get the money out by the beginning of next week – $2,400 for a family of four," Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC of the $600 in payments tp individuals.

The proposed legislation also includes about $25 billion in rental assistance and an extension of an eviction moratorium put in place earlier this year, which is was set to expire this month. An additional $82 billion would be set aside for schools and colleges to prepare to safely reopen classrooms.

"Millions of families are on the verge of eviction and this legislation addresses the rental needs and a short term moratorium," U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said before a vote. "We can accept the short term because we'll have a new president during the length of that moratorium to extend it further when necessary."

The bill also would help pay for the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. Moderna's vaccine was approved for emergency use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Friday, a week after Pfizer's vaccine also received emergency use authorization.



* This article was originally published here
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